Dark Lightning

John Varley. Ace, $26.95 (352p) ISBN 978-0-425-27407-1
On Rolling Thunder, a starship the size of a small mountain, twins Cassie and Polly live the mundane lives of utterly stereotypical teen girls from the 1950s: they’re athletic, cute, bright, and obsessed with romance, and they refrain from alienating boys with unseemly displays of intelligence or competence. When inarticulate genius Jubal declares that the ship must stop or be destroyed by a newly discovered cosmic speed limit, his pronouncement triggers a crisis of confidence in Rolling Thunder’s genteelly autocratic government. Mutineers ambush the adults, and the girls must stymie the insurrectionists before the ship is destroyed. This labored, second-rate pastiche of Robert Heinlein’s YA fiction is archaic in sensibility and full of lengthy narrative-halting info-dumps that offer no hint of the brilliance Varley once displayed. (Aug.)
Reviewed on: 06/23/2014
Release date: 08/05/2014
Genre: Fiction
Mass Market Paperbound - 352 pages - 978-0-425-27408-8
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